Chanukah Humility

We continue to count the nights of Chanukah and we have reached day seven. We have seen, and observed, the progression of the fruits of the Spirit as moving toward issues in the heart. The next one is as well, although we often look for it in actions.

On night seven the candle we light is HUMILITY. Yes, I put this in capital letters. Yes, we often think it should be something “smaller or less than.” Without understanding humility, we cannot truly tell ourselves if we are humble or not.

Here is the definition of humility: the quality of having a modest or low view of one’s importance.

The Cambridge English dictionary says this: the quality of not being proud because you are aware of your bad qualities:

I like the idea from the Cambridge dictionary of “being aware of your bad qualities.” I tend to think that if we are humble, than we KNOW what our faults are. We walk out our “bad qualities” with understanding and repentance. We place ourselves at a lower level when we recognize the personality traits we need to change.

There are many verses in the Bible about being humble, or that give the exhortation to be humble. One I find as a challenge for myself is in the book of Micah. Interestingly enough, we once again have a word difference between most translations and the Complete Jewish Bible.

Micah 6:8 (ESV) He has told you, O man, what is good;and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?

Micah 6:8 (CJB)Human being, you have already been told what is good, what Adonai demands of you — no more than to act justly, love grace and walk in purity with your God.

In this instance, the CJB uses the word, “purity” to describe being humble. I guess in many ways that is true. If we consider our “bad qualities” and have a “modest view” of ourselves, than we are cleaning ourselves and doing our best to be pure before God. We take the “bad qualities” we know about ourselves and we ask HIM to help us wash them away.

There are LOTS of verses in Proverbs about humility… I encourage you to google them and read them. So many reminders that humility is highly important in our daily walk.

Jesus taught about humility:

Matthew 23:12 (CJB) for whoever promotes himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be promoted.

I Peter 5:7 is another well known verse about humility:

Therefore, humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, so that at the right time he may lift you up. Throw all your anxieties upon him, because he cares about you.

This verse is literally telling us to “lower ourselves” under God’s hand. When we submit to Him, HE will lift us up. I love how this verse says to “THROW” our anxieties on Him! When we KNOW that HE cares for us, than HE will LIFT US UP!

In our family we have discussed the idea of a “false humility.” Sometimes we try to “live lower” than someone else, and talk about how we don’t have the same “worldly goods” or the same thoughts as the other person, but inside of our hearts we have pride. It is a form of pride when we compare ourselves and say we are “lower,” but our hearts are far from being lower. The reason we are making the comparison is so that people will think better of us, which is NOT being humble.

Our reflection during this time should be looking inward and examining our hearts. Are we quietly submitting to HIS will for our lives? Are we seeking HIM in SPIRIT and TRUTH?

Our daily walk should reflect HIS LOVE and LIGHT to those around us. Don’t compare yourself to others. Don’t allow the enemy to creep in and bring pride to your thoughts. The minute you begin to believe you have all the answers and promote yourself is the minute that Adonai will bring things your way to humble you.

I think these verses about LIGHT can also bring understanding to humility:

Luke 11:34-35 The lamp of your body is the eye. When you have a ‘good eye,’ [that is, when you are generous,] your whole body is full of light; but when you have an ‘evil eye,’ [when you are stingy,] your body is full of darkness. So take care that the light in you is not darkness!

Don’t let your “evil dark eye of stinginess” affect your walk. Be GENEROUS and HUMBLE as you let your LIGHT SHINE. When people look into your eyes let them see HIS LOVE.

 

Love and blessings,

Rose Horton

His Promise Stands

My friend Megan mentioned something a few days ago about the end of 2019, and the fact that there’s still TIME to accomplish things and complete some of the tasks that God has called us to.  

She reminded us that 2019 still has a certain number of days left, and she brought encouragement to really end the decade well and ask God what else, if anything, He would have us take action in the remaining days leading up to 2020.

Her words resonated with me and I mulled over this most of the weekend.

In the middle of asking God what areas I needed to work on, what still needed to be finished before the new year, etc., He spoke to me very clearly out of one of my favorite verses, Numbers 23:19: “Am I a man that I would lie?”

“Ok God,” I thought.  “You have my attention…I haven’t called You a liar, have I?”

Quick as lightning in my Spirit I heard His response: “No, but you stopped partnering with me on your Promise…just because the year is almost over doesn’t mean I have changed My mind”

Cue mic drop.

What has God said to you in the past that you may have “shelved?” Have you given up on the things that He has promised?  Do you believe Him?  Has your heart started to disengage because there is only a matter of weeks left of the year and you are still waiting on something He promised?

If He said THIS is the year, He will keep His promise.  Psalms 12:6 (TPT) says: “For every word God speaks is sure and every promise pure. His truth is tested, found to be flawless, and ever faithful. It’s as pure as silver refined seven times in a crucible of clay.”  

Let me ask you again – What has He said to you?  His word surely does not return void (Isaiah 55:11).

Even with just a short amount of time left this year, God is still God and has not gone back on His word. Don’t give up now! If He said it, you will see it. You’re almost at the end, I encourage you to finish strong and full of HOPE!

Return to your stronghold, O prisoners of hope; today I declare that I will restore to you double.” – Zechariah 9:12 (ESV)

~ Mandy Woodhouse

Epic Love Story

Is life about Christ, or is Christ life itself?  It seems we can be consumed with making our lives about Christ, and still miss Christ himself.  He refuses to become one of our science projects or artistic masterpieces.  He demands to be our life.  That is – if we belong to him and claim to live in him.

So, how do we find Christ himself? Where does he hide?  What does he do with himself?  Where do we go to walk and talk with him?

Maybe, when we forget about ourselves and really seek God for God’s sake, we are on the path.

Maybe, when we help someone just because they need help, we are learning his ways.  And, maybe, when our hearts seek his company in the quiet hours, we will discover him waiting patiently in the wings ready to share his heart with us.

When we discover that we are his life, it becomes a little easier to make him our life.  When we get to the end of our rope and find him there, we start to trust in him.  When we are weak and sick, and he gently comforts us, we feel his love.  When we are strong and triumphant, and he joyfully shares our victory dance, we become friends.  

Like the marriage vows, we find him “in sickness and in health, and in the good times and bad.”  The beauty of it is that, unlike wedding vows, there is no “till death do us part.”  This short life is just the preamble to an epic love story where we truly “live happily ever after.”

~ Brad Heilhecker

Love Extravagantly

If I speak with human eloquence and angelic ecstasy but don’t love, I’m nothing but the creaking of a rusty gate.

If I speak God’s Word with power, revealing all his mysteries and making everything plain as day, and if I have faith that says to a mountain, “Jump,” and it jumps, but I don’t love, I’m nothing.

If I give everything I own to the poor and even go to the stake to be burned as a martyr, but I don’t love, I’ve gotten nowhere.

So, no matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I’m bankrupt without love.

Love never gives up.

Love cares more for others than for self.

Love doesn’t want what it doesn’t have.

Love doesn’t strut,

Doesn’t have a swelled head, Doesn’t force itself on others,

Isn’t always “me first,”

Doesn’t fly off the handle,

Doesn’t keep score of the sins of others,

Doesn’t revel when others grovel, Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth,

Puts up with anything,

Trusts God always,

Always looks for the best,

Never looks back, But keeps going to the end.

Love never dies.

Inspired speech will be over some day; praying in tongues will end; understanding will reach its limit. We know only a portion of the truth, and what we say about God is always incomplete. But when the Complete arrives, our incompletes will be canceled.

When I was an infant at my mother’s breast, I gurgled and cooed like any infant.

When I grew up, I left those infant ways for good.

We don’t yet see things clearly. We’re squinting in a fog, peering through a mist. But it won’t be long before the weather clears and the sun shines bright!

We’ll see it all then, see it all as clearly as God sees us, knowing him directly just as he knows us!

But for right now, until that completeness, we have three things to do to lead us toward that consummation: Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly. And the best of the three is love.

1 Corinthians 13:3,8,11-13

Message Translation

The Way Of Love

Silent No More

Her voice was muted

the day she married him

He gave everyone in his life 

the power to break her down

He did not have values and principles and self respect

A hurt little boy, in an adult body

Oh how she was blinded 

by fake love

She dared not fend for herself

If she tried she would be verbally abused, belittled, disrespected

It made him feel good

When he broke her down

He had the power

While she lived in fear

He could hide his demons, 

his issues, but not his sin

Open for all to see,

yet no one spoke up!

She had so much to say, 

but she was not heard

He said she threw tantrums, 

when she was desperate to 

be heard

What they call “abuse”

became her norm

Silent treatment when she 

tried to speak her mind

Financial abuse when 

she dared to disagree

Emotional, mental and verbal 

abuse, when she wanted him 

to take responsibility for his wrongs

He stole her voice and she allowed him to

He would do as he pleased 

and got his applause 

While she died little by little 

Everything she did was 

wrong in his eyes

She would end up apologizing

cause he never did

Playing the victim was his 

perfect role

The children grew up

The pain of abuse visible in their eyes and behaviour

Silently pleading for mom 

to leave

Till that day she woke up 

from her deep sleep

She asked him to pack his 

bags and leave

She knew it was time to put 

herself and her children first

To stop the abuse

To finally know peace

She cried many days and nights 

She knew she could no longer 

be controlled and silenced

Pass on the baton of abuse 

to her children

No, it had to stop!

She took of her mask

Hard and painful as it was

Little by little she took 

her power back

Day by day she grew stronger

As her relationship with 

Papa grew deeper 

Oh what a magnificent sight 

she was to behold through 

the eyes of her Father

His perfect love for her made 

her fearless and bold

He put all her broken pieces 

back together again

Creating a masterpiece of a 

once broken life

Today her testimony sets 

broken sons and daughters free

She can relate to others pain

She wore the scars

She tasted the pain

She was abused and manipulated

Nothing she went through 

was in vain

She is breaking cycles

She now knows her worth

Her standards are high!

She was created to be protected, loved and respected 

If not -hit the road Jack!

She discovered her purpose 

when she faced her demons!

She took her voice back!

She is silent no more!

Having her voice suits her just fine!

~ Ebigale Wilson

Silent No More

The Journey

RestoredMinistries.org

Total Abandonment

After a bout with food poisoning I was so sick and I was asking God, What do you want to be for me that you couldn’t be before this happened?

(Something I am learning in my study of Brilliant Thinking by Graham Cooke)

I had asked over and over and not really got the answer. It started Sunday night and rolled on into Tuesday before I was getting any better.

Tuesday this song “Come In” shuffled and I put it on repeat as the words “Total Abandonment” kept resonating with me.

So I looked up the definition.

This is the definition of Abandonment-

The self-surrender to an outside influence.

Abandon; careless freedom or ease; surrender to one’s emotions.

Wow! God was getting my attention. As I laid so weak I could barely move with my head in a bucket for hours upon hours to the point of almost dehydration… I was powerless. I could not help but be surrendered to whatever was causing me so much sickness.

I then started thinking about how many times we surrender to our emotions? How many times do we surrender to pressures or to outside influences that harm us instead of uplift us? How many times do we fuss and fume when mishaps or disappointments come our way?

I know for me, far too many.

Our Total Abandonment, like the definition says; self-surrender, but instead of to outside influences, we always need to make sure it is to the Inside Influence.

Total Abandonment to The Holy Spirit.

Thankfully we simply just have to “Come In” to His presence. When we do Come In, we …

Read more of Come In Here and listen to the song

Chanukah Faithfulness

Night six of Chanukah we light the LOVE candle again… Five candles and reminders of who HE wants us to be brings us to FAITHFULNESS. What does it mean to have faithfulness inside of us?

One of the most popular verses about faithfulness is in the book of Lamentations. Putting several together we read:

Lamentations 3:21-24 But in my mind I keep returning to something, something that gives me hope —that the grace of Adonai is not exhausted,that his compassion has not ended.[On the contrary,] they are new every morning! How great your faithfulness! “Adonai is all I have,” I say; “therefore I will put my hope in him.

God’s great LOVE is what compels us to keep going. It is clear that when we RETURN to something that brings us HOPE, we will see the COMPASSION of Adonai. The last verse explains His FAITHFULNESS. I think it is easy for us to forget that Adonai is FULL of LOVE, COMPASSION, and FAITHFULNESS. HE really will never LEAVE us or forsake us.  HE ALONE brings us HOPE.

As I looked for the word, “faithfulness” in the Word of God, the only person I could find that faithfulness was attributed too was God. Verses in the PSALMS. Verses that bring understanding to God’s greatest attribute – being faithful. Both of these are encouraging to us as we understand WHO God is.

Psalm 119:90 your faithfulness through all generations; you established the earth, and it stands.

Psalm 36:6 Adonai, in the heavens is your grace; your faithfulness reaches to the skies.

I said last week that as we move through the fruits of the Spirit, the attributes become closer to the heart. Faithfulness takes it a step deeper for sure… Lots of people were considered “full of faith.” We have the faith chapter in the book of Hebrews.

 

As I looked at chapter 11 in the Complete Jewish Bible, I noticed that they used the word, “trust” instead of faith. Now my thought process on all of this is highly intrigued! I want to know WHY????

What is the difference?

The definition of faith is:

1. complete trust or confidence in someone or something.

2.    strong belief in the doctrines of a religion, based on spiritual conviction rather than proof.

 

The definition of trust is:

firm belief in the reliability, truth, or ability of someone or something.

I do not have a way right now to inquire with Complete Jewish Bible to find out why they used trust. I fully believe they have a good reason. I found a long article written in 2007 that has a great explanation. To go into all the details here is just tough.

Here is one paragraph from the conclusion:

So, we can see that true faith is more than just belief in the existence of God. It is not just believing in God; it is believing God. It is trusting God. It is trusting in what God is, what God has done, and what God promises to do. It is performing what God instructs us to do in his word.

Sermon by Philip Edwards

May 19, 2007

Copyright 2007, Philip Edwards

Studies in the Word of God

If we understand faithfulness in ourselves to be the idea that we do not just believe IN God, but that we TRUST God enough to know that HE will do what He says He will do, than I think we get the right concept. Having FAITHFULNESS inside of us is more than just a belief that God exists. If someone says that we are filled with faithfulness, it would mean that we truly believe God and trust God with EVERYTHING.

When we grasp FAITH in this manner, than we have to realize that carrying the attribute of FAITHFULNESS should not be taken lightly. We have shared things that everyone can agree should be shared (LOVE, JOY, PEACE…). Now we have reached faithfulness and we must acknowledge that the attribute goes deep. This is not “on the surface I believe in You.” Faithfulness is more than just confidence, it is TRUSTING Adonai so deeply that we WANT to do what He says.

If we say that someone has at the gift of FAITH, it needs to mean someone that is trustworthy. Someone who will “do what God asks” because they TRUST God so deeply that they do everything with Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness…

How are you in your faithfulness? Do you TRUST God so completely that others are drawn to Him? Or more importantly, do you TRUST Adonai so fully that others know you follow Him?

Faithfulness… It’s time to do a heart check and see where you stand. You might believe “in God,” but do you truly BELIEVE GOD? WHO is your heart putting faith in? Man, or God?

I know this is what I struggle with. I often want to believe man over God… Tough to trust when man fails. But, if we truly believe the statements above about God, than we have NO reason to not carry faithfulness inside of us.

Chanukah LIGHT… let’s think about HIS LIGHT.

Psalm 27:1 Adonai is my light and salvation; whom do I need to fear? Adonai is the stronghold of my life; of whom should I be afraid?

BE FAITHFUL. BE the one that TRUSTS so much. Share that LIGHT with others…

Love and blessings,

Rose Horton

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lean In A Little Further

This morning during my time with God, I had a serious encounter with Holy Spirit.  I hope you know the kind of encounter I’m speaking of.  It was glorious as I was moved to sobbing, I felt breakthrough in my Spirit, and I was trembling in awe and reverence of Who He is and what He has done for me.  

It seemed like every song on my shuffling worship playlist hit me in the heart, and scripture was jumping off the page.  I could hear so CLEARLY and felt such tremendous peace and approval.

Regretfully, I glanced at the clock, which rudely informed me that I only had about 15 minutes left of this supernatural ecstasy before I had to continue with my normal morning routines or I’d be late.  

I don’t know if it was my brain trying to justify my actions or if it was my emotions feeling like I just couldn’t take anymore because it was sooooo good, but somehow, I began to think that it was time to pull out of this beautiful heavenly place.  As if I was “filled up for the day” and therefore somehow released to leave God’s Presence and go about my day.  I certainly felt utter satisfaction – no doubt about that.  I both wanted to start my day but also felt like an anchor was there pulling me back into His Presence.  But I knew that I had things to do and it was time to get up and go.

And then I heard Him speak: “Mandy, I NEVER want to let you go!”

I was wrecked.

I realized then that there is so much more. There is so much more to our “quiet time” with Him.  The “Secret Place” is so much bigger and better than the corner we have settled for.

He asks us in John to ABIDE…. that word in Greek means so many beautiful things, including to tarry and to linger and to stay. HE WANTED ME TO STAY WITH HIM LONGER!

The farther I go in my walk with Him, the more I realize that a fact about Heavenly hunger is that we are actually NEVER filled. We just get invited to keep going and going and pushing in deeper and deeper and we have to actually challenge ourselves to not stop just because we’ve had an emotional or spiritual encounter that we think has set us up for the day.

THERE’S SO MUCH MORE, y’all.

And He is worthy. And He can bend time for us. He will do the impossible just to be with us – again and again.

I was reminded of a dream I had once, and while thinking about this dream I felt Holy Spirit take me into His Presence yet again.  I was able to revisit what He showed me in the dream, but also He gave me even more insight through another vision, rather like an extended version of a movie.  

In the dream I was with this woman who I knew from a previous ministry, and she was chatting my ear off with criticism, accusation, negativity – all the things that pastors deal with and yet struggle with regularly.  I found myself backing up into a deep closet while she kept yapping at me, and I was able to close the door and lock myself in.  When I did that, I could still hear her chatting away, yet it was muffled.  So I went a little deeper, and then a little deeper, until I couldn’t hear anything but my own heart beating in rhythm with the Father’s.  In the extended vision this morning, I then saw that I was so utterly transformed in the “deeper” places, perfectly in rhythm with His heart, that when I finally did exit the closet, the Glory on me was so intense that it silenced the woman completely, and caused her to repent and begin to speak Praises instead of cursing.  

That’s what going deeper into His Presence looks like.

Leaning in and abiding is a supernatural experience. YOU HAVE PERMISSION TO TURN YOUR BRAIN OFF. He’s the God of the impossible, which we all agree on, and He CAN bend time for us. His reality in Heaven is OUR reality because we are seated WITH HIM in Heavenly places (Ephesians 2:6) and if He is the God of the impossible, He can change circumstances, literally stop time (He did it for Joshua) and change our perspective if we allow Him to.

He did it for me this very morning.

God didn’t just want to fill a place called Heaven with a bunch of humans, He wanted INTIMATE FRIENDSHIP with us.  

Everything that Jesus went through was for INTIMATCY.  I am convinced that one of the devil’s best tricks is to cause us to forget that fact and to keep us from going deeper and lingering longer.  

Why stop short of everything He has for us?  Even if you feel that you can’t take it anymore, let Him burn you with His love a bit longer. Burning leaves a mark, yes, but it’s a heavenly mark that has the supernatural power to transform the earth.

Next time you are pressing in and feel the need to “come out” a little early, I dare you to press in just a bit longer.  Watch the GLORY that comes forth!  He is so worthy.

~ Mandy Woodhouse

Step Into The Light

You would always find 

her in the background

Here the shadows became 

her home

She would disappear to 

this place and no one 

would notice

Robbed of her worth and 

her voice

The silence would be her 

safe place

No one came to save her

From the chains choking 

the life out of her 

Voices tormenting her

day and night

The despair and anguish 

on her face

a glimpse of 

her heart

Drawing her further away 

from the light

She felt at home here

Pain was all she knew

She thought she would die here

Till the day her life was 

turned upside down

She had to decide…

Would she die in the dark

Or would she step out and embrace the Light

She made a choice to step 

out of the shadows and trust Papa with her life

Scared and alone she went 

on this journey

That would stretch her and change her and heal her

A journey that would show 

her, her worth

Her voice came alive as she gleaned and she grew from her secret encounters with Papa

Father brings each one of us 

to this place of drawing a 

line in the sand

Where we have to decide to disappear or tackle every fear

The bride of Christ was called to embrace this journey

of healing and growth

To become a beacon of hope

and faith

To a world in desperate need 

of healing and grace

She is coming out of the wilderness

The most fruitful place 

Papa lured her to

The shy, voiceless girl is 

no more 

She knows her worth,

It can’t be put into words

For too long she believed

the enemies lies 

He knew that if she would discover her voice and her worth 

Many sons and daughters would find deliverance and healing in her journey of love!

The remnant bride is stepping 

out of the shadows

Her life a testimony of Papa’s transforming love

Her mouth a horn

filled with oil

Bringing healing, deliverance 

and life, to the one’s getting ready 

to step into the Light!

~ Ebigale Wilson

Step Into The Light

The Journey

Forever His

Tear-stained cheeks

And worn-out knees.

White-knuckled hands

And a heart that seeks.

A silent cry that speaks volumes

And a whimper that surrenders.

A shout that brings silence

And His promise she remembers….

Click Here to read the rest of this piece from our archives by Stephanie Gable.